Rosaleen Rickerby is pleading for the return of her husband's letters.ABC

An Irish woman is asking for the return of love letters written by her recently deceased husband that were stolen in a burglary of her California home earlier this month.

Rosaleen Rickerby’s husband of 56 years died on their anniversary in December after a lengthy illness. This April, a burglar broke in there home in Glendale and took a small leather make-up case containing the love letters her husband sent her in the 1950s before they got married, ABC News reports.

"They took jewelry and stuff like that, but the letters are something that you can't replace," she said.

Rickerby met her husband John in Belfast when she was 17 and he was 18. He moved to Canada, but never forgot her and wrote her every week or two.



"He used to always say we were soulmates from the day we met," said Rickerby.

She moved to Canada in 1958 and they got married.

"Every so often I would take them out and read one or two or three or four," Rickerby said of the letters.

"I really treasured them, because it's something. He's gone now and that's something of his," she added.

Her son, Mark Rickerby is offering a $2,500 reward for the return of the letters.

"I guess they couldn't figure out how to open it, so they took the whole thing. My worry is that they just opened it somewhere on the road and threw it in some bushes and we'll never see it again," he said.

Rosaleen said she hoped they’d "be kind enough within their heart to say she needs those letters back.”